India v Pakistan, 2nd Test, Kolkata, 4th day March 20, 2005

Runs all around

On the Ball with S Rajesh and Arun Gopalakrishnan

Before this innings, plenty had been written about Dinesh Karthik's inability to contribute with the bat, but he silenced his critics with a wonderfully gutsy and priceless 93. Those who had seen him bat at the domestic level and in under-19 tournaments for India would have noted his ability to score all round the wicket - today, he showed he could do the same at the international level too. Karthik's wagon-wheel shows he was most prolific through third man, but he was quite adept at scoring on both off side and leg side, through the V and square of the wicket.

Equally important, he understood the needs of the team - till lunch, he was fairly circumspect, taking 66 balls for his 31. Then, when the need of the hour was to up the tempo, Karthik changed gear superbly, scoring his next 62 runs from just 74 balls. As the over-by-over Manhattan shows below, Karthik was primarily responsible for India's acceleration in the second session, while Rahul Dravid provided the solidity - after lunch, his 46 came off 91 balls.